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Thursday, April 17, 2008

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FTA: mea. 1-8 (C)

elides into:

STA: mea. 8-15 (G)


mea. 16-23 (Cm)


FTA: mea. 24-31 (C)

elides again into:

STA: 31-38 (C)

A (C)
mea. 1 – I
mea. 2 – I
mea. 3 – I
mea. 4 – V
mea. 5 – I
mea. 6 – I viiº7/V
mea. 7 – V vi6 V6/4 V/V
mea. 8 – V (pivoting as I in G)
mea. 9 – V6
mea. 10 – I
mea. 11 – V4/3
mea. 12 – I6
mea. 13 – IV ii6
mea. 14 – V6/4-5/3
mea. 15 – I

B (Cm)
mea. 16 - V4/2
mea. 17 – i6
mea. 18 – viiº i
mea. 19 – V
mea. 20 – V7
mea. 21 – i6/4
mea. 22 – viiº i
mea. 23 – V

A (C)
mea. 24 – I
mea. 25 – I
mea. 26 – I
mea. 27 – V
mea. 28 – I
mea. 29 – I
mea. 30 – V7
mea. 31 – I
mea. 32 – V6
mea. 33 – I
mea. 34 – V4/3
mea. 35 – I6
mea. 36 – IV ii6
mea. 37 – V6/4-5/3
mea. 38 – I

Clementi’s Sonatina in C Major is an unusual sonata form. Here’s why:

According to expectations, each measure contains only one chord, so the harmonic rhythmic is rather slow to start. As cadences appear (as in measures 6-7) the rhythm picks up drastically, up to four chords being expressed. That’s not too peculiar as plenty of composers follow this same pattern. However, the length at which Clementi moves is quite short, the FTA only being an entire 8 measures. There is no transition between the FTA and STA as the cadence at measure 8 elides with the beginning of the STA (hence no transition). This is very unusual, as most sonatas during this time have at least a small transition.

All is going fine and dandy until the B section (the development, for the sonata form-challenged), when Clementi shifts to the parallel minor, C minor! (Drastic and unexpected, I’m sure.) He even ventures out to change some of the RH structure, introducing octave G’s. It’s all a ploy to keep the listener unaware of what’s coming next…as ambiguous and dastardly as it may seem. And fool us he does, our dear old Clementi, with a short “Sol Fa Mi Re Do” retransition to the A section, in C major as would be expected. Surprisingly, the melody is voiced an octave lower than the exposition and measures 28-30 are a wee bit different but the real change comes later, in measures 31-32. Rather than the beginnings of an arpeggio upwards, Clementi goes down; again, very, very clever. It’s also here that we finally realize, “Ah! You’ve stayed in the same key!” It’s a wonderful and joyous time for everyone as the modulation has created a complementary and cohesive unit we like to call “recapitulation.” But again, it’s all so darned short with very little time for any transitions. No matter – we still have two themes, a transition, and some nice material that closes it all up, giving us our complete (but bared-boned) sonata form by Muzio Clementi.


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